News at Medicine - February 2021 - Community and support

Community and support
February 24, 2021

After completing four years of medical school and receiving your Doctor of Medicine, your medical education and training doesn’t stop there. The next step is completing a postgraduate residency program. With so many programs available across Canada, what makes a program seem unique or the best fit for a medical student?


Feb. 8-14, 2021 was Residency Awareness Week. Three residents from the Discipline of Psychiatry explain why they chose this program at Memorial University.

Dr. Emily Fitzgerald, second year psychiatry resident

Emily-Fitzgerald-News.jpg“My reasons for applying to be a Psychiatry resident at Memorial were two-fold: I love the city and I love the people! My clerkship experiences at MUN in Psychiatry were highly rewarding, enlightening, and just generally fun. By and large that is thanks to the staff and residents of this program. I’m fortunate to call them my colleagues!

The Psychiatry residency program here at Memorial stands out for the wide range of clinical experiences offered (ER, urban, rural, addictions, community treatment, forensic populations to name a few) while also having a resident body size that allows for easy collaboration between other residents and faculty. 
One of the best things about being a resident at Memorial is also the best thing about living on the island: a sense of community with a group of people who have a good sense of humour.”

Dr. Dave Lundrigan fourth year psychiatry resident

Dave-Lungrigan-news-(1).jpg“I had a great experience as a Memorial University medical student doing my core rotation and electives in psychiatry. The staff I worked with were very enthusiastic, knowledgeable and it genuinely felt like they wanted to recruit me to the program.  I also am from NL and have a family of 4 with a 5th addition on the way! I've found the Memorial program to be very family friendly. 
I think the level of autonomy given to us early on in this residency is a great way to ‘get our feet we’" in psychiatry.  We are given a fair amount of responsibility in the psychiatric emergency room even in our first year. That being said, I've always felt supported by all the staff that I've worked with.  This level of independence quickly helps build our confidence in a safe setting.
The opportunities for both bedside and didactic teaching to other learners is present and encouraged in almost every rotation.  I enjoy passing the pertinent knowledge I obtain in psychiatry on to other medical learners whenever possible.
The thing I appreciate most about the program is the respect given to us when we propose management plans for our patients.  I have felt respected and listened to when I come up with plans for patients needing care. Staff will add their own guidance and insight to this however they encourage and are open minded to suggestions we make and appreciate that we may see something that others have missed.”

Dr. Jessica Sang, fourth year psychiatry resident

Emily-Sang-news.jpg“After growing up and completing all my studies in Calgary, Alberta, I decided it was time for a geographic change and a new experience. I was attracted to Memorial University for its program size, strong training in general psychiatry, and rural training opportunities, which were things that I identified as important to me during my medical school training. After being in the program for almost 4 years now, I can say that I would apply to be a Psychiatry resident at Memorial University again (and cross my fingers to be accepted again) in a heartbeat!”

In our Psychiatry program, we have the opportunity to work with almost every psychiatrist in the program, which makes for quite a diverse learning experience, as we have the opportunity to draw from an array of practice styles and strengths of various psychiatrists while we ourselves develop as clinicians.”
The strong mentorship from staff is another strength of our program. Staff genuinely want to help us achieve our professional and personal goals. I know I can approach any of the staff I work with, and they will go out of their way to assist me.

 “I have always felt supported in my residency journey at Memorial University. I am part of a strong community of residents, staff, and interdisciplinary team members. They all make long nights on-call easier! I get to work with a diverse, talented, and supportive group of residents, including those outside of my own discipline. I am in awe of my co-residents every day!”

Visit the Discipline of Psychiatry's website to learn more about its postgraduate residency program.